Pomegranate Molasses Lamb
Shoulder of lamb
Chickpea and pomegranate salad
250 grams dried chickpeas
Olive oil3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
3 Tbsp pomegranate molasses
200 ml boiling water
One chicken stock cube (optional)
A few threads of saffron, infused in boiling water (according to instructions on packet)
Seeds of 1 large pomegranate
Handful of fresh coriander, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
Begin the day before, by soaking the chickpeas overnight in cold water. (If you don't have time to do this, you can always used canned chickpeas, but the dried ones are much nicer!). Rinse thoroughly, and prepare according to the instructions on the packet - I boiled mine for about an hour and a half, until tender.
Infuse a few strands of saffron in a tea cup with some boiling water. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a saucepan and briefly fry the sliced garlic* before adding the drained chickpeas and pomegranate molasses. Add the 200ml of boiling water, the stock cube (if using - this isn't in the original recipe, but I think it adds flavour) and the saffron-infused water to your pan, and simmer gently for ten minutes or so, until you are left with just a small amount of flavourful sauce.
Use the ten minutes cooking time to de-seed your pomegranate. This is my least favourite part of the cooking process - not only is it quite time consuming, but I am incapable of extracting the seeds without covering myself (and everything else in my kitchen) with brightly-coloured juice**.
*Be careful not to let your garlic get too brown, as it will develop an unpleasant acrid taste.
**I've actually started de-seeding pomegranates in my underwear - not because I am some sort of sensual domestic goddess, a la Nigella...but because I've ruined too many tops with spatters of pomegranate juice.